Nikolay Baskov

Nikolai Baskov was born on October 15, 1976 in Moscow, Russia. In 2001, he graduated from Russia's Gnesin Academy of Music, specializing in chamber and opera performances (professors V. Levko and V. Shcherbatov), after which, he was admitted to the post-graduate program at the Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory (professor P. Skusnichenko). Baskov graduated the Conservatory with Gold Medal Honors in 2003.

After winning the Russian National Young Singers Contest (First Prize, 1998) and Grande Voce Contest (Second Prize, Spain, 1999), Baskov received an offer from Russia's Bolshoi Theatre to perform the part of Lenskiy in the P.I. Tchaikovsky opera, "Eugene Onegin". When he played this role in 1998, he was the youngest person to do so in the history of international opera. This was a breathtaking start for a young artist. Baskov's opera portfolio now includes such roles as Vladimir Igorevich in "Prince Igor" (by A. Borodin), Yurodiviy in "Boris Godunov" (by M. Musorgskiy), Izmail in "Nabucco" (by D. Verdi), Alfred in "Traviata" (by D. Verdi), Spakos in "Cleopatra" (by J. Massne), Cavaradossi in "Tosca" (by G. Puccini), and many, many others.

In 2000, a video for the legendary song "(In Memory of) Caruso", as performed by Baskov, was released throughout Russia and the audience's response immediately propelled Baskov into star territory by becoming the most watched video on television outlets and the most played song at radio, topping all domestic radio charts for months in a row. From that point forward, Baskov's popularity reached national level and his recordings (both classical and pop repertoire) sold in the millions of units. To date, Baskov is the only Russian artist to cross over from classical into pop music. Each new Baskov release tops all music charts, receives regular and consistent play on radio, and his videos are the most requested and most watched on all television outlets (including MUZ TV and MTV Russia). Baskov has been awarded with all of the most coveted national music honors and awards, including, "Ovation", "Zolotoy Gramofon" (Golden Gramophone 0 US Grammy equivalent), “MUZ TV”, "Style of the Year", "Singer of the Year" and many more.

Another important milestone for Baskov which occurred in the year 2000, was his life-changing meeting with legendary Spanish soprano - Montserrat Caballe. After performing together several times, Caballe invited Baskov to train with her, in an effort to further enhance Baskov's vocal skills and style. This was a critical point in his professional life. Being selected as Caballe's pupil, and, from that, becoming her regular stage partner, expanded Baskov's talents and audience, considerably. They performed together in the most renowned venues in Spain, Italy, Germany, Switzerland and elsewhere. World-wide media lauded Baskov's unique voice, brilliant vocal skills, wide range and technique, and called him one of the world's great tenors.

Today, Baskov holds the titles of Russia's and Ukraine's National Artist. He has been awarded top honors in Belorussia - the National F. Skorina Medal - and the Gold Medal from the Peace Foundation (for Baskov's charitable contributions and peace-promoting activities). He has been named the "Golden Voice of Russia" - the country's top music honor.

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